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Humans shape distribution and habitat use of an opportunistic scavenger

Research focused on evaluating how human food subsidies influence the foraging ecology of scavenger species is scarce but essential for elucidating their role in shaping behavioral patterns, population dynamics, and potential impacts on ecosystems. This study evaluates the potential role of humans in shaping the year?round distribution and habitat use of individuals from a typical scavenger species, the yellow?legged gull (Larus michahellis), breeding at southwestern Spain. To do this, long?term, nearly continuous GPS?tracking data were combined with spatially explicit information on habitat types and distribution of human facilities, as proxied by satellite imagery of artificial night lights. Overall, individuals were mainly associated with freshwater habitats, followed by the marine?related systems, human?related habitats, and terrestrial systems. However, these relative contributions to the overall habitat usage largely changed throughout the annual cycle as a likely response to ecological/physiological constraints imposed by varying energy budgets and environmental constraints resulting from fluctuations in the availability of food resources. Moreover, the tight overlap between the year?round spatial distribution of gulls and that of human facilities suggested that the different resources individuals relied on were likely of anthropogenic origin. This evidence supports the high dependence of this species on human?related food resources throughout the annual cycle. Owing to the ability of individuals to disperse and reach transboundary areas of Spain, Portugal, or Morocco, international joint efforts aimed at restricting the availability of human food resources would be required to manage this overabundant species and the associated consequences for biodiversity conservation (e.g., competitive exclusion of co?occurring species) and human interests (e.g., airports or disease transmission). informacion[at]ebd.csic.es: Ramírez et al (2020) Humans shape the year?round distribution and habitat use of an opportunistic scavenger. Ecol Evol https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.6226


https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ece3.6226
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Contenidos con etiqueta artificial lights .

Los humanos determinan la distribución y el uso del hábitat de un carroñero oportunista

El conocimiento de los patrones de comportamiento a lo largo de todo el año en especies oportunistas y de amplia distribución, como la gaviota patiamarilla (Larus michahellis), es importante de...

Los efectos de la iluminación artificial para ecoturismo sobre los pingüinos enanos

La observación de animales es una actividad ecoturística emergente en todo el mundo. En Australia y Nueva Zelanda, la observación nocturna de pingüinos enanos atrae a cientos de miles de turistas...

Efectos de la iluminación natural y artificial en el comportamiento nocturno de la salamanquesa común

En este trabajo se han evaluado los efectos del grado de iluminación nocturna (fase lunar e iluminación artificial) en la actividad de ejemplares de salamanquesa común (Tarentola mauritanica) de...

La contaminación lumínica y el abandono del nido

Una de las fases más críticas en la vida de los petreles es el abandono del nido por parte de los pollos que pasan de la dependencia de los padres en la tierra a una vida independiente en el mar....
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